Nitrogen: 'Too much of a good thing'
Nitrogen pollution costs the European Union between €70 billion and €320 billion per year. This cost is more than double the value that nitrogen fertilizers are estimated to add to European farm income.
Integrated approach needed
Reducing nitrogen emissions is a central environmental challenge for the twenty-first century. Policies should address farming, meat consumption, use of human sewage and fossil-fuel burning. The Gothenburg Protocol, a policy that aims to reduce energy consumption and fossil-fuel burning, is an opportunity to further reduce emissions. Together with other policies, for example on manure application and livestock number reduction, these have led to a modest drop in European nitrogen pollution. However, existing policies are fragmented. A global inter-convention nitrogen protocol is needed.
|Author(s)||Mark A. Sutton, Oene Oenema, Jan Willem Erisman, Adrian Leip, Hans van Grinsven & Wilfried Winiwarter|
|Publication||Nature 472, pp 159–161|